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What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city?
House hunting is never easy; it's even trickier in a city the size of São Paulo. Choosing the right place to live is essential to having a pleasant and safe stay in Brazil. Rent can vary greatly depending on the neighborhood and condition of the building. There is a range of options of apartments. Depending on the neighborhood you select, you can find good options for one-bedroom apartments starting at around R$ 2.000.00.
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What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats?
Here are brief descriptions of some of the popular neighborhoods in São Paulo:

Located in the south of the city between Av. Nacoes Unidas, Santo Amaro, Bandeirantes and Roque Petroni Junior, Brooklin is a middle- to upper-middle-class neighborhood. It is popular among the foreign community and has a large German influence. The region has good commercial infrastructure and contains ample green spaces, making it popular among pet owners. The region is mostly residential, with a mixture of houses and apartment blocks, but the area around Agua Espraida, close to the Buraco Quente favela, should be avoided for safety reasons.

Cerqueira Cesar
This is another small neighborhood, just over two square kilometers, but is ideally located between Al. Casa Branca, Rua da Consolacao, Estados Unidos and Antonia de Queiroz. Due to its proximity to Av. Paulista, it is popular among short-term visitors to the city, who have a large selection of hotels and serviced apartments to choose from. The neighborhood has a good commercial infrastructure with the main attractions being Oscar Freire, Haddock Lobo, Bela Cintra and Al. Lorena, the city's fashion center. There is also a large variety of bars and restaurants to choose from and good public transport facilities, including the subway. The main problems are traffic, pollution and noise.

While there is no neighborhood called Ibirapuera, the park has such a dominating presence that many apartments and houses in the region are advertised using it as a reference point. Ibirapuera is a very popular location for foreigners, mainly because of the park's lure, but also due to the growth of the office space in nearby Itaim. Another advantage is its proximity to the domestic airport of Congonhas as well as the city's largest shopping center, Ibirapuera. It is, however, subject to heavy traffic and poor public transportation.

Moema, like Brooklin and Ibirapuera, is another favorite among the foreign community because of its ample green space and relatively quiet streets. This middle-class neighborhood has good commercial infrastructure with plenty of bars and restaurants and is relatively safe, but car theft is not uncommon, especially in the vicinity of the bars at night.

One of São Paulo's best examples of social inequality, Morumbi has a sharp contrast of extremely rich and extremely poor. It is not uncommon to see large, protected mansions surrounded by slum areas. The neighborhood is predominantly residential, but traffic en route to the main part of the city can be a problem, particularly at peak times. The neighborhood's two main parks, Alfredo Volpi and Burle Marx, provide an ample green space of over 280,000 square meters. Most of the region's commerce is located along Av. Giovanni Gronchi, which also has the American Graded school. The region also houses the state government palace as well as the city's top hospital, Albert Einstein.

Vila Madalena
This is São Paulo's bohemian neighborhood and is home to many of the city's artists and musicians. Street names like Harmonia and Simpatia add to the neighborhood's Zen feel. Its large selection of bars and nightclubs makes it an ideal place to enjoy an active nightlife, but not so suitable for those who like a good night's sleep or those with children. In general, it is fairly safe but traffic can become intense on the weekends. The neighborhood was made more popular by the prime time soap opera “Vila Madalena.” 

Itaim Bibi
This is one of the city's fastest-growing regions in terms of commercial buildings, bars and restaurants. The neighborhood is not as popular with the foreign community, due to problems with traffic congestion, noise and pollution. The region's large number of bars, restaurants and nightclubs make it ideal for night owls, but unsuitable for families.
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Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes?
Most expats tend to rent their homes in São Paulo.
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Typically, will I be required to pay additional money up front (such as a deposit) before moving into leased housing? If so, how much is common?
It is common to have a warrantor/trustee (“fiador”) to sign your rental contract; you don't have to pay additional money up front.
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Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra?
Utilities are not included. They are separate costs.
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Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood?
Brazil has an unfair reputation of being extraordinarily dangerous, but its main cities are no more dangerous than any you would encounter in Europe or North America. Brazil is politically stable with no natural enemies. As long as you're streetwise and sensible, you should be just fine.
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I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city?
Electric current is 60Hz and current is 110 volts.
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Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me?
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Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.

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